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Old 10th July 2020, 03:43 PM   #461
mattstat is offline mattstat  United States
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Join Date: Oct 2009
KiCad is a commonly used free tool for PCB design. Some board houses take its files directly, which saves a little work.

It seems that all PCB design packages have their quirks. If you already know one and can get what you need from it, it may not be worth switching, unless you plan on doing a lot of that kind of work in the future.
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Old 10th July 2020, 04:51 PM   #462
gentlevoice is offline gentlevoice  Denmark
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About to take the ESL plunge
@bengel: Hi ... I've used diptrace for some years and found it to be very intuitive and straightforward to use (they apparently aim for this in their development process). A free non-commercial version can be downloaded from here:

Download DipTrace - DipTrace

Cheers,

Jesper
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Old 10th July 2020, 04:57 PM   #463
bengel is offline bengel  United States
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Mostly my complaint with fritizing is it is a pain when you have a new parts not in the library... thus you have attempt to create something from an existing part.

I'll give those a quick try but given I've spent alot of time designing/making PCB's with frizting, it may be better to stick to the devil I know :-).

I'd like to do something with resistor boards also and post them to the forum. Such that folks can just upload gerber files to their favorite PCB manufacturer and get boards made.
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Old 12th July 2020, 09:46 PM   #464
bengel is offline bengel  United States
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Attached is a rough schematic where I landed on my bias supply. All caps are 3900 pF with 4000V diodes. There is a variable supply input not shown so 900VAC is the theoretical max coming out.

If I've calculated this all correctly, it gives me a max of ~5000Vdc (noted on the schematic). I thought about adding another stage but don't think I'll need to go higher than that.

I read some stuff in the forums about whether to positive or negative charge the diaphragm, is there any consensus on which is better? All I can find is dust concerns... which I have an electrostatic air filter for my house so even more likely dust will be negatively charged, so better to negative charge the diaphragm.

Soldering together the resistor banks now... Settled on a 52 kOhm segment resistance value crossing the panels somewhere in the 300hz area.

After all of that is done, step transformer board construction.

Currently debating building an L/R 24db analog active crossover (like I currently use). I like to stay analog as much as possible... seems ridiculous for my Marantz pre-pro to do all tha D/A conversion, then take that analog into a digital crossover, convert it to digital, split for the crossover - then output analog to feed the amp. But it's just so damn convenient to buy a digital crossover off the shelf :-).
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File Type: png BiasSchematic.png (59.8 KB, 103 views)
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Old 13th July 2020, 03:10 AM   #465
mattstat is offline mattstat  United States
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You don't typically see final filter caps across the output of ESL bias supplies, as the multiplier should be filtering reasonably well to produce DC. If you want one, placing it before the 20 megohm resistor seems like a better spot.

I have a cheap pro-sound analog crossover I use early in designs to get things up and running. I like to know how things play together before committing to build specific new stuff. Being able to dial in whatever frequency you want with a knob is a lot faster than dealing with most digital interfaces also.
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Old 13th July 2020, 06:31 AM   #466
mattstat is offline mattstat  United States
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Also, your output should be referenced back to ground, not the anode of D4. Your output isn't explicitly shown though, so maybe I'm misinterpreting something.
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Old 13th July 2020, 01:23 PM   #467
bengel is offline bengel  United States
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You are correct on the filter cap.. I made a mistake which I quickly realized when I was bread boarding it last night.

I just ended up deleting the filter cap. I used my oscilloscope to measure the output (at a much lower voltage obviously) and I couldn't see a hint of ripple.
(updated schematic attached)

The output is on the other end of the 20Mohm resistor to "ground". I get pretty good arcing between ground and the input side of the 20M resistor so I'll take that as a sign the voltage multiplier is doing its job. I get no arcing on the output side of the resistor (I kind of expect that) but I can hear that is wants to :-). Hopefully, I don't have too much diaphragm leakage.

I originally was going to put a neon lamp on the output, I actually have a couple of them. I seem to remember it had more of a purpose than merely showing the supply is running.

I'll take a look at the crossover stuff.... don't want to get too far ahead of myself. Like to make sure these panels will make good sound 1st.
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Old 13th July 2020, 03:04 PM   #468
mattstat is offline mattstat  United States
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The blink rate of the ESL-63's neon circuit gives an indication of the charge rate. Fast blinking typically indicating leakage in the speaker.
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Old 14th July 2020, 06:39 AM   #469
gentlevoice is offline gentlevoice  Denmark
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@bengel: To my memory someone here on diyaudio tried to stabilize the HV voltage (capacitor) to the membrane and experienced quite a difference in SQ. Just FYI (haven't tried it myself though).

Cheers,

Jesper
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Old 15th July 2020, 08:44 AM   #470
geraldfryjr is offline geraldfryjr  United States
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For what it is worth, I am a Huge advocate in using a regulated Bias Supply.
I am always striving for that perfectness.

Regulated !!! ..... Not just one that you can adjust.

If you are using a CCF board regulation is as easy as a few resistors a dual opamp and a LM317 (sse the second sheet in the link below).

See this thread for more details,

how can test the stator insulation and mylar coating?

This is the addem I did due to a simple mistake in the schematic and can be ignored if you are using a pre assembled CCF board as mentioned.

how can test the stator insulation and mylar coating?

jer

Last edited by geraldfryjr; 15th July 2020 at 08:48 AM.
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